Neither The Bourne Legacy nor Snow White and the Huntsman brought in in as much dough as Universal probably wanted; not to mention, each film was given an overall lukewarm critical reception. Nonetheless, each managed to gross more than double their $125 million and $170 million budget, respectively, worldwide in theaters, and so Bourne 5 and a Snow White sequel are both on the horizon.
Universal Chairman Adam Fogelson is present for the ongoing 2013 CinemaCon in Las Vegas this week, where he announced that Bourne 5 is more than just talk now, and has entered the active development stage; meanwhile, the Snow White followup is tentatively slated to arrive in theaters within two years’ time (i.e. by 2015).
Fogelson, according to the CinemaCon event report from Collider, described that (currently untitled) fifth Bourne installment as something that Universal is “actively working” on, but did not reveal whether that means Bourne franchise screenwriter Tony Gilroy – who both wrote and directed The Bourne Legacy – has begun to write the project, or is even involved at all right now.
Bourne Legacy set the stage for a fifth installment; specifically, one in which the chemically-enhanced ex-government operative Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner) and laboratory researcher Marta Shearing (Rachel Weisz) continue to evade the personnel from covert programs that are connected to Treadstone. Series producer Frank Marshall previously confirmed that the next Bourne movie will follow Renner and Weisz on their ongoing survival run.
Both Fogelson and Marshall have avoided ruling out the proposal that Matt Damon could return as Jason Bourne in Bourne 5. However, bringing him back doesn’t make a ton of sense from a storytelling perspective – given how Bourne Ultimatum served as a conclusion to the character’s arc – and Damon has, likewise, been voicing his own doubts about the idea, having checked out Bourne Legacy for himself.
As Fogelson mentioned earlier this year, “The point of ['Bourne Legacy'] was to create a universe, a world and characters that give us a lot of freedom and flexibility in how we go forward” – meaning, it’s best to not assume either way yet, as far as Damon’s possible return is concerned.
On the Snow White news front: Fogelson previously confirmed that both Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Chris Hemsworth playing the Huntsman will have central roles in the sequel, as opposed to back around the film’s theatrical debut, when the word from insiders was that Universal’s followup will shift the focus primarily onto the Huntsman.
The next Snow White installment needs both a new screenwriter and director, now that Rupert Sanders is taking a pass after the fallout due to his private affair with Stewart; in addition, scheduling may present an obstacle to the planned 2015 release date, seeing how Hemsworth is going to be preoccupied filming The Avengers 2 beginning in early 2014 (ie. around the time shooting would need to get underway on the Snow White followup).
Of course, given the (in general) mixed feelings about Snow White and the Huntsman, it’s all the more important that Universal attaches some buzz-worthy artistic talent to the sequel, in order to convince the opposition that the project is even worth making in the first place. We’ll just have to wait and see how all that plays out over the forthcoming months.
We’ll keep you posted on Bourne 5 and the Snow White and the Huntsman sequel as more information becomes available.